Following hurricane Irma, Key West Art & Historical Society’s “Fort Adventure” Parent & Me classes at Fort East Martello will remain on schedule from 10:00AM to 11:30AM Thursdays, with the fee waived until January to better support families in the community.
“While we all struggle to return to life before hurricane Irma, families with young children in particular are looking for a sense of normalcy and structure,” says Society Director of Education Adele Williams. “So, while the Society has had to cut back on some of our programing due to the fiscal impacts of Irma, providing a free and entertaining outlet for learning and engagement with local cultural institutions is our way of supporting that need.”
Nearly twenty families participated in the past two classes that celebrate hands-on, inquiry-based education. Led by early childhood educator Elizabeth Khun, the sessions include craft stations and a circle-time that targets specific letters, numbers, shapes, colors, calendar concepts, and beginning sounds, as well as group story time and outdoor play in the courtyard with the Imagination Playground— oversized blue building blocks that encourage open-ended learning.
Starting Saturday, November 4 from 10:00 AM to 11:30 AM, The Society will reinstate their monthly “Museums & Me” program for children aged 0-6, at the Key West Lighthouse and Keepers Quarters. This engaging preschool program is offered in partnership with the Healthy Start Coalition and appeals to working parents that don’t have the opportunity to attend mid-week classes.
Commencing January 6, Early Childhood specialists Natalie Robinson and Leah Stockton will host the “Museums & Me” program that will take place on the first and third Saturday of each month. To add to the children’s cultural palate the program will alternate between the Lighthouse and the Oldest House Museum.
“Exposing young families to our island’s cultural heritage and resources is part of our mission and has long-term ramifications for future museum-goers,” says Williams.